Teens Vs. Werewolves “Monster-Take-Down” Comic “Extinct” Gets 80’s Nostalgia Right

A. Quinton — Nov. 19th 2011

80’s pop culture has been resurrected over the last five years, mostly in zombified incarnations designed to sell tchotchkes and t-shirts to those of us who were kids then (full disclosure: I am wearing a Ghostbusters t-shirt as I write this). It’s not hard to make new things look like they’re from the era of denim, neon pink and new releases on VHS. However, it’s extraordinarily difficult to make something feel authentically 80’s, especially when it comes to replicating something with the kids-on-a-dangerous-adventure vibe that was the core of so many awesome creative endeavours of the time. Only two things I’ve seen in the last few years have captured that Goonies-style zeitgeist: The movie Monster House and now, the high school kids versus werewolves comic Extinct.

From the Extinct web site:

Texas,1985. On the first full moon of the year a small town named Spring Valley gets taken over by werewolves. Teenagers Jimmy Reynolds, (the town outsider), Nick Evans (his best and only friend), and the girl next door, Lauren Finch, have to make the werewolves EXTINCT. Can they live long enough to figure out why Jimmy is the only one who can save the town?

Writer / creator Fabian Rangel Jr. populates Extinct‘s world with classic 80’s archetypes who look, say and act as though they’re from a werewolf-centric version of Monster Squad. All of your favourites are here: snobby prep girl, unaccountably ostracized everykid, his wise-crackin’ rebel sidekick, the jock villain with the amazing mullet. Somehow, Fabian takes these stock characters and combines them in a way that effortlessly invokes the “holy shit, anything could happen!” energy that made Exctinct‘s 1980’s ancestors so amazing. As Fabian writes in his blog:

This comic is my love letter to all of those awesome 80s movies where kids had to take down monsters. It’s influenced by The Monster Squad, The Lost Boys, and also The Goonies, Teen Wolf, and even The Breakfast Club. It’s pretty much just 80s as fuck.

The werewolves in Extinct (and there are a lot of them) are of a design that will appeal to most Werewolf News readers. They’re tall, rangy (if a bit top-heavy) and artist Jethro Morales has given them lupine faces with just enough humanity to make them unnerving. There are some awesome transformation scenes, too, if that’s your thing (of course it’s your thing). Letterer Ed Brisson‘s work is crispy – crispy. The guy could put on a clinic about leading.

Individual issues of Extinct were meant to be distributed by Diamond, but that didn’t happen because of Reasons. Instead, you can order the graphic novel (which contains all six issues) from your local comic shop – it’s on page 304 of this month’s Previews. If you’re a werewolf fan craving a hit of some authentic 80’s action/horror sweetness, I recommend you go get your car keys now, because you’re going to want to read Extinct.

Update 2015-10-09: Extinct is not available to buy anywhere anymore, seemingly on purpose, which is a real shame.

  • Anonymous

    Speaking as a fellow who also grew up in the 80’s (and some of the 70’s) this looks like fun on the bun. Yet another comic to add on my to-read pile. 

  • Kyle Kaczmarczyk

    I’m buds with ol’ Fabian, and got a sneak peek at the first three issues and it’s friggin’ awesome! This book is nearly perfect!

  • If you could put us here at the site in touch with him, that’d be all kinds of awesome. I’m (nominally) the comics guy, and I would sure as hell love to review this.

  • Ya I really want this I am going to try to find a previews tomorrow to order it.

  • Fabian Rangel Jr

    Awoooooooo! What’s up, dudes? This is Fabian, the creator/writer of Extinct. It’s really cool to see some strangers so stoked for the book!

  • Fabian Rangel Jr

    Thanks, Antonio! Every pre-order counts!

  • Fabian Rangel Jr

    That’s great to hear! I think you’ll really dig it. It really is a mash up of all the great 80’s movies rolled into a comic book.

  • Fabian Rangel Jr

    Thanks for the kind words, Kyle! Wait till you read the rest!

  • Fabian Rangel Jr

    I’m right here! You should add me on FB or follow me on twitter. I’m everywhere!

  • So I get it from the Previews comic right can I still get it now.

  • Baeroth

    I’m a bit confused… how can I get my hands on this? And what’s “Previews”?

  • Fabian Rangel Jr

    Baeroth, Previews is a catalogue that comes out every month that lets comic book stores know what books are coming out soon. They use it to order from. Extinct is on page 304 of this month’s Previews. What you do if you want to order it is call or by a local comic book store, and place an order. Extinct will be in stores in January. The only way to make sure you get a copy is pre-ordering. Stores won’t order shelf copies!

  • Baeroth

    Okay, thanks!

  • Wondering when the GN of this is going to be released, ordered it back in November

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